I DON'T BELIEVE IN
"I DON'T BELIEVE IN YOUR
|*0 said a respectable fatherly-
looking old man in the town of
I had taken a handful of tracts
and gone out to visit in the district
where I lived, to speak of Jesus,
and to invite the perishing ones to
hear the story of his matchless love
On knocking at one door, my
fatherly -looking friend presented
himself. I asked him kindly if he
would accept of a tract. He said
" No, I don't believe in your way."
I said " No, I don't believe in my
own way. ?)
My old friend stared at me as if
I had been an apparition from the
spirit world. I remained silent
until the silence became painful.
My friend was bewildered. I said
" I did believe in my own way for
the first twenty years of my life, and
I'll tell you what my own way was.
I was well brought up by Christian
parents, went regularly to church
from my infancy, and joined the
church when I became old enough ;
I often read my Bible and said my
prayers ; I never did any one any
harm; I always paid my way — in
short, I was doing my best"
"Well," said my friend, "I think
that was a very good way."
" Yes," I replied, " I thought so
too; but I found it was not Gotfs
way. I found it written in God's
word, 4 Verily, verily, I say unto
thee, except a man be born again
he cannot see the kingdom of God*
(John iii. 3). ' He that believeth
not is condemned already' (verse 18);
i He that believeth not the Son shall
not see life ; but the wrath of God
abideth on him " (verse 36). * He
that believeth not shall be damned '
(Mark xvi. 16). ' Now to him that
worketh is the reward not reckoned
of grace, but of debt ; but to him
that worketh not, but believeth on
Him that justifieth the ungodly, his
faith is counted for righteousness'
(Romans iv. 4, 5). I found my way
was in direct opposition to GocPs
way. I was on the doing line, and
that is the down line to dark dam-
nation." " By the deeds of the law
there shall be no flesh justified in
his sight " (Romans iii. 20.)
My friend believed in a salvation
without faith and a religion without
Christ. He would not simply
receive it as the gift of God by faith,
who says, " look unto Me and be ye
saved" (Isaiah xlv. 22).
Do you believe in your own way
or in God's way? Which? God's
testimony of us is that "we have
turned every one to his own way "
(Isaiah liii. 6). That is the broad
way (Matthew vii. 13), and it leads
to destruction just as surely as God
has said it. Your way may see7n
right. "There is a way which
seemeth right unto a man, but the
ends thereof are the ways of death
(Proverbs xiv. 12). Jesus says, "/
am the way" (John xiv. 6). "He
that hath the Son hath life; and he
that hath not the Son of God hath
not life" (1 John v. 12).
Now, I think I hear you say —
"But you know I have been well
brought up, and I know my Bible
Yes; but that is just your own
way. You are too far up to take
Christ, as a lost perishing sinner;
but, like little Zaccheus, you must
come down. Nicodemus was well
brought up ; but with all his up-
bringing, he was going to hell, right
to hell. Up-bringing will prove
but a rotten twig to hold on to for
salvation, " for there is none other
name under heaven given among
men whereby we must be saved "
(Acts iv. 12) but the "name of Jesus
Christ of Nazareth" (verse 10).
Jesus says, " / am the way? But
you say, " I am not an unbeliever.
I believe the Bible, and have always
believed in Christ."
" Then you are saved ?"
" Oh no, I cannot say that — it
would be great presumption in me
to say that."
But God says it ; and whether is
it more presumptuous to take God
at His word or make Him a Hart
(1 John v. 10). It is one thing to
believe that Christ came into the
world more than eighteen hundred
years ago, and died to save sinners ;
it is quite another thing, as a lost
sinner, to believe on Him as my
personal Saviour. I may believe
that my dinner is on the table
waiting for me ; but that will not
satisfy me — I must really partake
or die. So it is not believing about
Christ, but believing on Him, "and
he that believeth on the Son hath
everlasting life" (John iii. 36).
Mark the word h-a-t-h "hath ever-
lasting life." God says so.
But you say, " I am a member of
the Church." Very good, if you are
saved ; but if you are unconverted,
your taking the sacrament is one of
the blackest sins under heaven. It
is eating and drinking judgment to
yourself (1 Cor. xi. 29). Church-
membership is not Christ. Jesus
says, " / am the way"
At the close of a gospel meeting
lately I was asked to speak to an
anxious woman. When I got
through the many that were there
to where she was sitting, she
grasped me by the hand, and with
streaming eyes, and choking with
emotion, she said, " Oh sir, I have
been a member of the Church for
twenty-four years, and I never knew
till to-night that I am a lost sinner ; "
and as she buried her face in her
handkerchief, she sobbed out, " O
what must I do to be saved?"
I pointed her to the Lamb of
God, "who His own self bare our
sins in His own body on the tree"
(i Peter ii. 24). She saw that
" while we were yet sinners, Christ
died for us" (Rom. v. 8). She
believed and lived. The smile of
heaven was on her face, her yet
undried tears sparkled under the
Sun of Righteousness like the dew
under the morning sun. I left her
rejoicing in the Lord. This is God's
way of saving sinners.
Have done with your own way,
your own doing, your upbringing,
and your religiousness. None of
these will save— all put together
cannot save you, Jesus says, " I
am the Way."
J. M. S.